Monday, September 13, 2010

Kansas City Chiefs Become Big-Time Entrepreneurs

Written by Allison Way, writer and videographer for Think Big Partners.

Tonight is the night, Kansas City Chiefs fans: Monday Night Football kicks off when the New York Jets take on the Baltimore Ravens at 6:00C and your Kansas City Chiefs go head-to-head with the San Diego Chargers at Arrowhead Stadium at 9:15C. Football season is finally here, but what else have your Kansas City Chiefs been up to off the field? As a matter of fact, some have been participating in their own entrepreneurial ventures and starting up their own small businesses.

First and foremost, we would like to pay tribute to Lamar Hunt, the founder of the American Football League, Major League Soccer, and North American Soccer League and also the founder and owner of the NFL’s Kansas City Chiefs and Kansas City Wizards. Lamar Hunt also coined the phrase “Super Bowl” when he jokingly threw out the name (instead of using the “AFL-NFL Championship Game”) by combining his daughter’s favorite toy, the Super Ball with a bowl game. As many of us know, the Super Bowl is now the most-watched show in history, thanks in great part to Lamar Hunt. Aside from sports, he also established Oceans of Fun and Worlds of Fun theme parks in Kansas City. Lamar Hunt truly is Kansas City’s Big Chief.

Eddie Kennison, the owner of many small businesses including a restaurant, a telecommunications company, a wine club and nonprofit called Quick Start, is a retired Kansas City Chief. He recently jumped on the executive board of the brand new Social Media Club of Johnson County which co-promotes events and ensures that all members and businesses are provided with social media education.

Former Kansas City Chiefs quarterback and inductee in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, Warren Moon, has not only had success with the Chiefs, Oilers, Vikings, and Seahawks, he has also found success as an entrepreneur. Based in Irvine, California, Moon’s one-stop sports and entertainment marketing firm called Sports1Marketing offers full services to clients in the area of sports, entertainment, charitable events, and media.

Deron Cherry, a Chief from 1981-1991 became a limited ownership partner in one of the NFL’s new expansion teams, the Jacksonville Jaguars. He is also a managing general partner with United Beverage, which is a local Anheuser-Busch distributor. Cherry also dedicates much of his time visiting universities to give lectures about the importance of entrepreneurship.

Tony Gonzalez was a tight end for the Kansas City Chiefs and today owns a nutritional supplement company called All Pro Science based in California. His small business sells protein powder, recovery drinks, immune-system boosting supplements, and much more.

Tonight's game is at 9:15 at Arrowhead Stadium.
Will Shields played for the Kansas City Chiefs as an offensive guard. Today, he owns 68 Inside Sports, a gymnasium and sports facility based in Lenexa, Kansas as well as A Will to Succeed Foundation which was organized in 1993.

Fans and entrepreneurs: tonight when you are watching the game, keep in mind that some of the players out on the field may become the next successful small business owners. Not only will many of these players achieve the American Dream through football, but also through entrepreneurship, and of course, by never ceasing to Think Big.

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